You Are the Reason Your Team Can’t Make Decisions


“Why can’t my team handle anything without me?”

This is a question I hear a lot in my work with credit union leaders and through credit union strategic planning events. It’s a question and frustration many leaders deal with but there’s a question behind that question.

“What is holding my team back from being able to take action without my input?” There’s a reason your team can’t handle anything without you.

Typically, two reasons surface with my credit union strategic planning and other clients when I witness this frustration from the leaders:

  1. Micromanaging and fear. When one of your team members makes a decision, you immediately step in because it’s not the way you would do it. I speak from experience. I used to have the very best way of doing things and wanted my team members to do it exactly like me. Until I realized that the outcome is what matters most and not the route to arrive at that outcome. There’s also fear instilled in your culture based on how you respond when someone makes the wrong decision. Instead of treating it as a learning opportunity, you immediately scold the team member for their failure. That’s a quick way to build a team full of paralyzed houseplants that can’t move without your direction.
  • Lack of alignment. It’s difficult to make a good decision when there is no clarity around your credit union’s brand, what your mission is, and your long-term vision and short-term goals. In the most recent alignment of our purpose, mission and vision, I found our team much more capable of making good decisions when they have something to base it on. When people know why the organization exists, they can use that as a quick litmus test for “yes or no,” because they have the goal in mind.

If your team cannot or does not have the autonomy to move forward without your input 100% of the time, your credit union will not grow. It will be stuck where it is and only grow as fast as you can move. And if you find yourself stuck in task saturation, putting out the fires of the day, you’ll never have the opportunity to get to strategy and leadership.

There is one thing you can start doing right now to help your team make good decisions without you having to step in. Ask, “What do you think you should do?”

This was a game changer for our team. I found that often their answer was better than what mine would have been, and sometimes their answer is a chance to teach.

Credit union strategic planning season is just around the corner.

When you’re ready, let’s talk!

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Dexter Ochoa

Development Assistant

When it comes to blending logical thinking and creative problem solving, Dexter’s abilities are undeniable! Beginning his career as a Web Developer, he’s no stranger to the wide world of Marketing and Advertising. Calling Biñan City in the Philippines home, Dexter has a burning desire to visit the Alpine peaks and valleys of Switzerland. While that journey may be far off, he is still no stranger to international travel. While visiting Japan, he was able to enjoy his favorite delicacy: Sushi and Sashimi. He also learned unexpected facts about Japanese Yen, specifically that it has special markings for the blind to know its value!

Living life by his motto to “Do good even if the world is unfair,” Dexter would also advise his younger self, “It’s hard, but you’re doing good!” Whether he’s enjoying a cup of coffee in the morning or the occasional Pale Pilsen in the evening, Dexter is eager to work with the talented professionals of YMC, and we’re just as eager to add his talent to the team as well! His marketing words of wisdom? “Be creative, and just do what you want!”

Andrew Wyche


Hailing from the NC state capital (that’s Raleigh if you didn’t know), Andrew is YMC’s Copywriter extraordinaire. That’s why he knows that “The verb form of ‘reconnaissance’ is ‘reconnoiter.’ The former is, strictly speaking, a noun.” Seriously, he knows his words and he’ll use those words to get bold and weird (in a good way) with his copy. Fuelled by a love for pasta, shellfish, a good single malt, or a meal consisting of all three, Andrew navigates life with a motto engraved in his heart: “Choose kindness. Always.” It is this guiding principle that has led him to explore the realm of marketing, driven by a desire to connect with people in meaningful ways. As he continues to chase his dreams, one bucket list item stands out above the rest – a pilgrimage to Scotland. With his heart set on adventure and his pen poised for creativity, Andrew’s journey is far from over.

Alex VanHaasteren

Senior Web Developer

Alex is YMC’s Senior Web Developer and, as the title suggests, she is an absolute pro! While she initially started in graphic design – working long and hard to expertly bring concepts to life – she also felt drawn to technology and applying her natural ability to problem solve. Web Development proved the perfect blend of her creative passion and technical savvy.

When Alex is out with friends – including her YMC colleagues – she’s up for Greek cuisine or some good pulled pork BBQ washed down with Diet Coke. Or an Old Fashioned, if the occasion demands. Someday, she hopes to go to Africa on a safari. Hopefully she’ll see a giraffe in the wild, because – as she’s pointed out – its neck is too short to reach the ground!

When she isn’t jamming out to T-Swift, she’s happy to impart some marketing words of wisdom, “Aim to create something unforgettable.” For day-to-day inspiration, she would remind you of two fundamental truths: You decide your happiness, and Ice cream is its own food group—not just a dessert.

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